Pioneer honoured at Kongwak
WHEN the major renovation works at Pioneer Park in Kongwak are launched this month, former Korumburra Shire councillor and president Stan Miles will be honoured.
The reserve owes its existence to the foresight of Stan, who in the early 1970s was responsible for the land being retained as a council reserve, a memorial to the original settlers who contended with this landscape.
A motion was moved in council and the park was aptly named Pioneer Reserve.
Stan had firsthand knowledge of what it meant to clear the scrub. As a young man he wielded an axe to clear a patch of land in the beautiful forests near Tarra Valley, only forced to walk off the land late in the Depression.
He never lost his respect for nature and as a councillor for over 18 years, he successfully campaigned for the retention of other bush reserves and the establishment of gardens within the shire.
The community of Kongwak is indebted to his foresight.
Cr Miles’ sons Neville and Wilfred and other family members will attend the launch. One of the new tracks has been named the Stan Miles Track in honour of their father. Neville Miles says his father would be proud to see the reserve has not only been preserved but has been upgraded.
The reserve upgrade has been funded by a grant from the Bass Coast Landcare Network Public Fund.
Pioneer Reserve now boasts new walking tracks, signage, information boards around the reserve at six sites and a virtual tour people can access via an app on their smart phone that will give audio on the reserve’s history, flora and fauna.
Three new picnic tables have been installed. South Gippsland Shire Council’s hard working environmental staff were putting the finishing touches to these last Friday.
For those who love a good bush walk, this wonderful reserve offers a variety of walks for all levels.
A round trip to take in all the stunning bush vistas would take up to 45 minutes, longer if you want to stop off at one of the new picnic tables near the creek and enjoy a lazy lunch, and breath in the great outdoors.
This is truly a hidden gem where you will discover a stunning array of gums, and a unique stand of towering Mountain Ash trees.
Kongwak resident Russell Savage pointed out, these trees are unique as they are the lowest growing Mountain Ash in mainland Australia.
“Mountain Ash trees are the tallest hardwoods and tallest flowering plants in the world. They grow up to five metres per year and usually grow to around 500ft,” Mr Savage said.
It isn’t just the Mountain Ash trees that are unique; Pioneer Reserve is one of the last remnant bush reserves left in the west Strzelecki region.
There is plenty to learn, see and do in the reserve that will soon welcome families, visitors and bus loads of school groups.
The Kongwak Landcare Community Group is proud of its renovated reserve, and welcomes everyone to come and enjoy the celebration launch on March 30 at 2pm.
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